What if? Going to a Land Down Under

Before anyone gets all excited – No, I am not going to Australia. However, one of my maybe not entirely healthy hobbies is planning out imaginary trips that I hope to take someday. I’m hoping to do a series of What If?  posts that will help me focus on new locations I haven’t been to and also help me learn about places I didn’t even know I wanted to go to. Think of it like those “mood boards” they have over on home improvement blogs.

Anyway, in that spirit, and because two of my good friends are going to Australia next month and I am totally jealous, I wanted to focus my first What If? on Australia, where women glow and men plunder.

So, what would I do if I was going to Australia? Here are the highlights.

One note: Australia is huge – giant. So, keep in mind that doing all the things I’ve listed could take you a while.  But that is the beauty of an imaginary trip, I don’t have to worry about silly things like time and money.

1. Visit Melbourne and Sydney

This one’s probably obvious, but I would want to see the big cities. In particular, I’ve heard great things about Sydney, Brisbane and Melbourne. All of theses cities are on the coasts and have wonderful beaches nearby, plus there are the obvious highlights like the Syndey Opera House.

One attraction that I’ve heard of and been dying to try is the Sydney Harbour Bridge Climb, which allows you to do a guided walk acorss the top of the bridge to experience great views of the city. Gimmicky? No doubt. Awesome? YES!

If you are looking to visit these cities, you might want to check out some options for Brisbane Accommodation.

2. Snorkel (or Dive) at the Great Barrier Reef

Located to the North East of the continent, the Great Barrier reef is legen- (wait for it) -dary when it comes to great diving locations around the world. Unfortunately, I’m not SCUBA certified, but if I were planning to go to Australia it’s definitely something I would look into. If, on the other hand you don’t want to do full on diving, it’s also supposed to be an amazing place to go snorkeling.

I’ve visited a few other reefs in my travel’s including a snorkeling trip near Caye Caulker in Belize and in the Red Sea near Jordan. It’s always been a memorable experience so I know it’s something I would enjoy on this hypothetical trip.

3. Visit the Outback

Much like my nights in the desert in Morocco and Wadi Rum, a trip into the foreboding Australian Outback really piques my interest.  Although the coast line of the country is highly developed and populated, many of the internal spaces are totally uninhabited. This means that with a few days drive in a camper van, you can camp out in completely unspoiled beauty. Harsh conditions, crazy animals, and miles without a gas station. It sounds like a crazy adventure that would be right up my alley.

4. Take the train Cross Country

We all know I love a good train ride. I’ve been reading In a Sunburned Country by Bill Bryson, and it’s convinced me that Australia is the country to do a cross country rail trip. Not only can you admire the beauty of the Outback, you can do it from the comfort of your air conditioned train car. Plus I’m sure they serve booze, which is always a plus.

The Indian Pacific line runs from Sydney to Perth twice a week – it takes about 65 hours. To me that seems like the perfect in between time. Longer than a day trip but not exactly the Trans Siberian.

5. Hit the Beaches

Finally, I would obviously hit up the beaches. You can’t go to Australia and not go to the beach. I’ve heard great things about many of their shores from Bondi Beach in Sydney to Byron Bay near Brisbane. I’ve only been surfing once in Hawaii, but that is also something I’d love to try out in the land down under. That and maybe a Vegemite sandwich.

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Disclaimer: This post was sponsored by a third party. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

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